On June 30th Upsurge Florida, the partnership between Tampa Bay Wave and StarterStudio in Orlando, is hosting a live-streaming investment roundtable called “Inside the Investor’s Mind.” The 1.5 hour event’s aim is to educate people who are interested in getting into the angel investing space, so that they understand what to look for, what questions to ask and how to determine which companies are worthwhile investments. They will also get a chance to connect with well-vetted startups seeking capital that were referred by the accelerators.
Upsurge Florida is “on a matchmaking mission to connect new or inactive accredited investors with promising, early-stage technology companies located in central Florida.”
Both Tampa Bay Wave and StarterStudio have vast investor networks and are focused on tech innovation within the state of Florida. Upsurge Florida was formed through a grant allocated by the Economic Development Administration (EDA) in 2018. The partnership intends to focus on investment into tech startups within the I-4 corridor, from the Gulf Coast to the Space Coast.
Event speakers will include startups and accredited investors. Companies will make their pitches to VCs, and spectators will observe the interactions, such as what questions the investors ask the founders to get a better idea of how far along the company is in its business development. The event will conclude with a live investor panel Q&A. The 3 startups making their pitches at the event are Home Lending Pal, a real estate platform focused on creating a more equal playing field for new homeowners; Wedzee, a wedding item resale platform; and Bacarai, a site for finding and booking group airfare deals.
Grit Daily caught up with Michael Burns, co-founder of Wedzee, the platform designed to make buying and selling new, used or handmade wedding items easy, to understand how he believes the event will benefit the early stage investment community. Burns believes that the event will be valuable to those interested in angel investing because they, “will be able to get a sneak peek look inside what it’s like to be in a pitch in a room… and get a better idea of how the investment scene, or investing, works.” Burns has prepared a pitch deck that lays out his company’s aims, growth and needs. His participation in Tampa Bay Wave’s accelerator program prepared his company for investor networking and pitch events.
Upsurge Florida is made up of business leaders and investors with a focus on making Florida a tech business hub, and ensuring that investment does not pass over the state. They especially benefit companies at the first stage of commercialization where additional capital is needed to reach benchmarks that attract traditional VCs. Both Tampa Bay Wave and StartupStudio are nonprofit accelerator programs that seek out the best and brightest founders leading innovative companies, and help them get to the next stage of growth through business coaching, workshops and networking events where they can connect with investors. The “Inside the Investor’s Mind” event takes place on June 30th at 12PM, and is free of charge.